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Evaluations of the postmodern world in Don DeLillo's plays Valparaiso: A play in two acts (1999) and Love-Lies-Bleeding (2005)

Grant number: 09/05431-4
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2009
Effective date (End): December 31, 2009
Field of knowledge:Linguistics, Literature and Arts - Literature - Modern Foreign Literatures
Principal researcher:Giséle Manganelli Fernandes
Grantee:Ana Cristina Canaveze
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências, Letras e Ciências Exatas (IBILCE). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de São José do Rio Preto. São José do Rio Preto , SP, Brazil

Abstract

This project aims at analyzing the plays Valparaiso: A play in two acts (1999) and Love-Lies-Bleeding (2005), by Don DeLillo, in order to verify how the American author rethinks and criticizes aspects of contemporary culture and society, such as consumerism, the power of the media, the capitalist system, the threats to civil rights, matters related to religious principles, and the making of profit at the expense of moral values. There is a need to study these plays in Brazil, since the research on Don DeLillo's work has mostly focused on his novels and short stories so far. Thus, through the author's use of language, the construction of the dialogues, and the discussion of the social and political aspects shown in the texts, a comparative approach of the plays will be carried out, concerning issues related to death, the worth of life, compassion, and the relationship among human beings. Jameson (1997), Baudrillard (1988), Harvey (1995), Eagleton (2003), Fortier (1997), Hall (1999), Osteen (2000) are some of the theorists whose texts will support the investigation. The study of the plays will address the inner conflicts endured by the characters and the question of their crisis of identity in the face of the uncertainties of postmodern world. Specific aspects of theatrical spectacle will not be main the focus of this research. It is important to notice that besides the analyses of the plays, the project includes their translation into Portuguese (still inexistent), in order to contribute to enhance the debate of DeLillo's literary production as a playwright in Brazil.

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